Peterborough United manager Darren Ferguson witnessed the proverbial game of two halves at Barnet today (July 20).
Posh maintained their unbeaten pre-season record with a 3-1 win at National League side Barnet thanks to a strong second-half display which included goals for Siriki Dembele and Serhat Tasdemir. The latter’s was a screamer from distance.
Posh were level 1-1 at the break after a display which didn’t please Ferguson. Ivan Toney equalised for Posh with a terrific free-kick strike after an error in possession from Christy Pym had gifted Barnet the lead.
“We were off the pace, we played without any tempo and we didn’t run enough in the first-half,” Ferguson moaned.
“Everyone knows how I want to play, but it won’t work if we don’t outrun and outwork our opposition. That didn’t happen in the first half when Barnet hurt us far more than they should have done.
“It was much more like it in the second half. We were much sharper, we pressed much better and we moved the ball well.
“It’s all part of a learning curve I guess, but we are just two weeks from the start of the League One season now and the players need to be impressing me.
“We’ve made nine new signings, but it doesn’t bother me who starts against Fleetwood. The players need to realise they have to work hard to get into the side. If running bothers them than they won’t start.
“The three goals we’ve conceded in pre-season have been sloppy. I want us to play out from the back, but I don’t want us to lose goals doing it.
“We’re scoring goals though which is obviously good. That was a fantastic goal from Serhat. Watching him play you wouldn’t know he was still only 18.”
Latest summer signing George Boyd played 45 minutes in his new centrel midfield position and Ferguson was happy with what he saw.
“George is a great example to the other players,” Ferguson added. “Here’s a player who has played at the highest level and yet he still wants to run around, press people and make tackles.
“He brings a willingness to work hard that others should copy.”
Striker Matt Godden and left-back Dan Butler missed the game today with niggles. Back-up goalkeeper Conor O’Malley was left out to give transfer-list goalkeeper Aaron Chapman 45 minutes.
Chapman and O’Malley will share goalkeeping duties at Bedford Town on Tuesday (July 23) with Pym expected to play 90 minutes in the match at Reading on Wednesday.
Marcus Maddison is due to play his first 45 minutes of the summer at Reading when Boyd will play an hour.